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UT Austin Fall 2011 Semester Review

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Boy, this semester definitely toppled the rest. After finally establishing ourselves as the leading gaming organization at the University of Texas at Austin, we took our reputation and skyrocketed it in into an amazing semester filled to the brim with exciting E-Sports and its unlikely pairing with my personal favorite beverage.

Barcraft Austin

Combining two of my favorite things in life: Beer and Starcraft; Austin’s first Barcraft event is just a signifier in a storm that is taking over bars across the nation. It’s an amazing spectacle to see patrons and e-sports fans alike enjoying Starcraft 2 in a setting usually reserved for football games and pitchers of lager. With the help of Star Nation producer, Andrew Lee, Texas E-Sports Association hosted its inaugural Barcraft event at Franks in downtown Austin followed by many more at Third Base Sports Bar.
Read full article here.

TeSPA Lantopia: Presented by Twitch.tv

After a slew of socials and bi-weekly meetings, the TeSPA officer team kicked into gear our first major event of the semester: TeSPA Lantopia presented by Twitch.TV! With over one hundred students showing up from the University of Texas and surrounding schools, this was our largest LAN event yet. Held in the Academic Annex, as our previous tournaments, the building proved to be a natural environment for the perfect LAN. Crowds gathered around consoles hoping to dethrone the next Marvel vs. Capcom 3 champ, while side-tournaments for League of Legends and Starcraft 2 were being arranged in a chaotic, but somehow efficient manner. Big thanks for our sponsors at Twitch.TV for providing the funds for the LAN and feeding our hungry nerdy member base. :)
Check out more pictures of TeSPA Lantopia here.

Texas Starcraft Showdown

Three words: Texas Starcraft Showdown. The LARGEST collegiate Starcraft 2 tournament thus far, casted by Evil Geniuses’ Geoff “Incontrol” Robinson and featuring a panel of players from across the United States, all clawing their way through a 128-man tournament for the biggest chunk of that $3,000 prize pool. Held within the confines of the decadent new ballroom of the Student Activity Center, Starcraft 2 fans rejoiced as they finally had an opportunity to witness a live tournament.

Words can’t describe the atmosphere of being an environment where competition is fierce, but at the same time sincere. Players calmly shake hands after being defeated, honorably acknowledging their losses; while particularly humble victors show no semblance of emotion after a dominant victory. These competitors save their energy for the long haul, because they know they are in it to win it. The elite players understand that they need to earn their keep by playing through hours and hours of matches. As time slowly passed away and the evening grew closer the player area of the tournament dwindled down. You can finally understand to some degree why the eight last remaining players all had previous experience in tournaments: because they simply required it. (One exception: UT Freshmen Brian Bobco, a zerg player who lost to the eventual winner: vileState)

Spectators found plenty of time to be amused as the gregarious Geoff “iNcontroL” Robinson brought to the tournament his charismatic and humorous casting style. Assisted by Quantic Gaming’s Alex “Axeltoss” Rodriguez and San Antonio-native Michael Gremillion, iNcontroL was able to bring another level of professionalism that our bi-annual tournament had not witnessed. Stream viewers were consistently pouring in online, as we took note of the record number of viewers that our stream was achieving on the Friday before Halloween. It took a dedicated audience, and a dedicated casting trio to successfully unify this amazing gaming experience. To be around this many fans of a single game and relish the moments of victory of your favorite player making it, or breaking it in this enduring tournament gives such a surge of emotions that could be summated to a phrase that I let my friend Artosis frequently use: “nerd chills”.
Special thanks to our sponsors: AT&T, Twitch.TV, Nvidia, and Ttesports!!
Check out pictures from the tournament here.

Midnight Madness

In late November, TeSPA members converged at Tek Republik gaming center for a night of unforgettable fun. Unlike previous events (err, much like previous events), we locked the doors of our gaming cavern and didn’t emerge until the sunlight crept through the door frame. Throughout the night and early morning, the ultimate gaming experience was had by all. With pizza in one hand in and a mouse in the other, members duked it out over every PC game imaginable while faraway depths belted frenzied Rockband battlesongs. The event symbolized a fitting end to the action-packed and sleepless semester.

Written By: Richard Sodachanh

 

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